20 October 2011

Eat like an Egyptian

I was reminded this week that I am failing misserably at this whole blog project and goal I have set for myself and that well.  So, I'll get back to it and someone else can decide if they are entertaining or not.

As most of you know in 2009 I went to Egypt.  It was a once in a life time kind of thing....yada, yada, yada.  Out of it came amazing memories and some truly great friendships.  Earlier this year the Charlotte Observer wrote about this restaurant in the University Area that was a breakfast American kind of place with Egyptian items on the menu called The Bigger Bite.  I posted the article to facebook and Josh quickly responded that we needed to try it.  Josh and I were desperate for a little "brother and sister time" so we tried it out last night.   Obviously, we were not in Egypt because at 8pm we were the only ones in the place.  Dinner starts at 9 in Egypt or at least anytime we ate.  Josh also told me that I could not tell Karim, our gracious waiter, that the mural on the wall was not an accurate depiction of the Sphinx and the Pyramids.  The Nile was right in front of the Pyramids and the Sphinx sat in the middle.  I still think it is a sign of the times when across from the sphinx there is a KFC and Pizza Hut.  Seriously!!

Yes, I'll take my pizza togo for the horse ride home.

(Note: There are extremely few horse and buggies in Cairo and I don't think the horses could take driving in Cairo as it is not for the weak at heart. Tourists taking pictures of the few that they see is not helping the Egyptian cause of modernization.)
 Well, putting their mural aside, there was Arabic music playing in the background and some Arabic soap opera on the television which was refreshingly familiar.  For dinner, we had the Egyptian sampler and koshari.  On the sampler was foul, some type of eggplant dip, falafel and tahina and hummus.  I asked Josh what foul was and he said, "You know street food.  Didn't you have it when we were in Cairo when we stayed out......oh yeah"  With one eyebrow cocked, I replied, "When do you think I was ever allowed on the street by myself".  In all actuality Mona and her mother did take me to walk around on the street and it was one of my favorite times in Egypt.  We had ice cream instead of foul and they  indulged me into stepping into an Egyptian bakery which was on my "must-do" list.

Pita lickin' good!
The main course was koshari and we had it mild and topped with shawarma beef.  I don't remember having this one either, but it may have been at the Galabaya  Party and I just didn't notice because there was SO much food.  It is rice, pasta, lentils a spicy sauce (you can get a hot sauce but Josh didn't think it was hot enough--I liked the mild) and then it is topped with shawarma beef or chicken. 

Probably our only disappointment of the night were our after dinner drinks.  Now don't get me wrong, Karim makes a mean cup of tea but there was a little part of me that wanted a rose tea or mint tea in a clear glass or a Turkish coffee to finish off what I thought was a great dinner.

If you go looking for the Bigger Bite, it is on JW Clay Blvd and Hw 29 near Nona's Bakery and Panera Bread.  I know Josh and I'll be back and I'll be ignoring geographical accuracy of historical structures and listening to a little Umm Kulthum .